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Wingo Debuts As ’30 For 30′ Producer on Tose Story

Jason Barrett

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ESPN Films’ new 30 for 30 short “Tose,” debuting today on ESPN.com, is about the greatest sports owner most people have never heard of.

Leonard Tose was the owner of the Philadelphia Eagles from 1969 until 1985 when he was forced to sell the team. His legacy is a remarkable mix of a lavish lifestyle and spectacular philanthropy. He was also a beloved figure by Eagles players and coaches of that era.

Acclaimed producer/director Mike Tollin, whose credits include the 30 for 30 “Small Potatoes: Who Killed the USFL?” and many other sports projects, is a Philadelphia native who for years wanted to make a film about Tose. Tollin nearly had given up until NFL Live host Trey Wingo called him out of the blue a year ago, suggesting the idea for a 30 for 30. Wingo discusses Tose with Front Row and how he became a producer on the project.

How did this 30 for 30 short come about?
Leonard Tose has always fascinated me as a person: A multi-millionaire who had it all. He created the Ronald McDonald House to help one of his player’s daughters and died penniless in an apartment in Philadelphia paid for by Dick Vermeil and [ESPN NFL analyst]Ron Jaworski. He was such a human character: incredibly charitable and incredibly flawed at the same time. I just have wanted to see this Leonard Tose film made on some level for so long. It’s one of the great stories in sports that no one really knows about.

Did you ever meet Leonard Tose?
No, I never did but always admired him. The Eagles as we know them now for the past 20 years or so were not those Eagles back in the 1960s and 1970s. They were perennial losers. Leonard wanted to bring Philly a winner, and the great scene late in the 70s between him and Ron Jaworski hugging after a win that gave them a winning record for the first time in a long time signified what he wanted to do. Plus, Leonard had STYLE. He’d fly a helicopter into practice, drop $100 dollar bills as tips.

ESPN’s Ron Jaworski is part of the film. How much did you work with him on this?
I talked to Jaws about sitting down with the filmmakers and he couldn’t wait. In a different time, Leonard Tose would’ve been the talk of social media. A new generation needs to know his story in all its glory and sadness.

Do you have a favorite 30 for 30 or 30 for 30 short?
“Irrelevant Giant” is one of my all-time favorites, as well as “The Great Trade Robbery” about the Herschel Walker trade.

Have you produced or been involved in any other films?
This is my first foray into what I hope will be many.

Credit to ESPN Front Row who originally published this article

Sports TV News

The NFL Still Considering Multiple Offers For Sunday Ticket

The NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has not bid for the package but has stated it is willing to partner with the new rightsholder for a potential deal.

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Sunday Ticket Negotiations

DirecTV currently has the rights to Sunday Ticket. That deal expires at the end of this upcoming football season. The NFL is expected to make a boatload of cash when they decide which media organization gets the next rights to the package. The only question is… who will that be?

Alex Sherman of CNBC reports that the NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has decided not bid for the package. However, they are interested in partnering with the new rightsholder for a potential deal. DirecTV knows that Sunday Ticket is a staple in bars and restaurants and is interested in maintaining those relationships.

Outside of the bar/restaurant industry, success has been limited for the satellite provider with the football package. Fewer than two million subscribers signed up for Sunday Ticket each year which made the package a money-loser for the satellite TV provider.

According to the report, the NFL wants more than $2 billion for the rights and a stake in NFL Media, which is being packaged with Sunday Ticket. Also on the table is the NFL’s mobile rights. The league’s previous mobile agreement with Verizon has ended.

An interesting piece of the negotiations is Sunday Ticket price. According to the report, a buyer would have limited flexibility on pricing. The NFL signed contracts with CBS and Fox and within the framework of those deals, language mandates Sunday Ticket have a premium price. That’s to prevent loss of viewers from the networks that feature local market Sunday afternoon games. So essentially, the price is the price for the consumer.

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Sports TV News

F1 Renews With ESPN For U.S. Media Rights

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

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F1 ESPN

The racing series F1 has decided to stick with ESPN through 2025.

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

The reported value of the three-year contract is set to pay F1 $75-90M per year for the U.S. media rights. Amazon had offered to pay roughly $100M per year, with the right to sublicense to a linear broadcast network. Comcast’s offer was similar to ESPN’s in terms of value and the structure. They also wanted to put select races on it’s streaming service, Peacock.

Netflix was in on the negotiations, as well. The makers of Drive to Survive, the streaming series that many credit with the sport’s explosion in popularity in recent years, wasn’t close on on their financial offer. Also, it seems F1 executives were not ready to put all of its races on a streaming service just yet.

Currently, F1 receives $5M per year for ESPN to broadcast it’s races. ESPN has grabbed about 1.0 million viewers per race. That makes F1 a more than viable option for the network to invest into again. ESPN will be able to put a small number of races on its ESPN+ streaming service exclusively. The vast majority being on ABC or ESPN.

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Sports TV News

Skip Bayless Says He And Stephen A. Smith ‘Sorted Out’ Their Disagreement

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

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Skip Bayless

Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless were locked in a war of words last week following the First Take host’s appearance on JJ Redick’s Old Man and the Three podcast.

The origins of their partnership were discussed and Bayless admitted he did not like the way Smith characterized the state of First Take before he arrived on set. Smith insisted that Bayless simply misunderstood what he meant by saying that he was told the show needed him.

Over the weekend, Skip Bayless says he and Stephen A. Smith got together at the Bayless home in California to talk things out in private.

“He was in LA, he came over, we sat by the pool,” he said on the latest episode of The Skip Bayless Show. “It wasn’t the easiest conversation for a while, but we slowly but surely sorted it out. We got through it, and we have been through so much together.”

Bayless reiterated that he considers Smith a brother. They love each other. That doesn’t mean they are always going to remember events the same way or see eye-to-eye all the time.

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

Fighting doesn’t mean the relationship is fractured. In fact, Skip Bayless was adamant that he remains closer to Smith than he is to most people in his life.

“I don’t trust easily because of the way I was raised, but I do trust Stephen Anthony Smith. Trust him with my life. Always have and always will. I trust he will always be there for me, and you better believe I will always be there for him.”

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